Packed with adventure and ecotourism, holidays to Costa Rica are brimming with tropical rainforest, wildlife reserves and volcanic parks. On the other side of the coin are its idyllic, secluded beaches that are sure to attract those in need of some indulgence.
The Central American country of Costa Rica is a place of rich natural beauty, from its long, deserted beaches to the lush rainforest and volcanic interior. Holidays can be spent doing very little or romancing in luxury resorts, and there are busier places to stay that are great for families and those looking to indulge in some Costa Rican nightlife. Adventures abound among its numerous natural parks and forest tours, while there are outdoor exploits to be found in almost all of its resorts, including horse-riding and scuba diving.
Nestled between Panama and Nicaragua, Costa Rica is a Spanish-speaking country with plenty of Mexican influence. It has coasts on the Pacific to the west and Caribbean to the east, both boasting excellent stretches of sand and clear, warm water. The majority of the resorts are located along the Pacific coast, with the north-western Guanacaste region being particularly popular.
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This off the beaten track resort offers visitors the chance to relax away from the hub of the busier tourist spots along the stunning coastline. Relax on the peaceful beach with views of mountains cloaked in dense rainforest or explore nearby national parks and even go zip-lining or canopy walking.
The sights and sounds of Playa Flamingo make this corner of Costa Rica a sublime one where the laid-back lifestyle reigns supreme. Traditional eateries are the order of the day around the country's largest marina, while turtles and birds play along the spectacular sand of one of the country's best beaches.
Translating as 'Beautiful Beach', Playa Hermosa lives up to the name in every sense. The Pacific Ocean laps at a tranquil silver-sanded shore that's popular without being overcrowded for gentle days by the beach. You can head to nearby national parks, Arenal Volcano or the town of Hermosa.
At Playa Tamarindo, the finer points of Costa Rica's downtempo lifestyle are amplified, nestling well with the zeal for life that defines the locals. Surfing and other watersports make for active days. Tourism has brought a wealth of restaurants and bars to the area, without interfering with its natural beauty.